Pioneering Centres of Inspiration

Nature showed us the way

It’s always fascinating to listen the thinking that sits underneath provision and practice outdoors, and to hear about the journey people have taken and how that happened.  A couple of weeks ago, Rachel was part of a small group within the Early Childhood Outdoors meshwork discussing (online) how those involved in all-outdoor nurseries might develop …

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Opening up the outdoors after lockdown

Having opened last October to the wettest autumn ever and then had to close in March due to the lockdown Janet Packer, co-owner/manager of Growing Wild Outdoor Nursery in Barnsley, continues to share their fully outdoor journey with the ECO meshwork as they cautiously reopened this June – with the same optimistic surprise that many …

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Staying true to why we work in the way we do

As settings begin preparations for moving out of lockdown towards a new normal, a great deal of anxious thinking and careful planning is being carried out throughout the UK.  We’ve heard before from a parent in the Beatle Woods Outdoor Nursery community and in this post, owner/manager Rachel Macbeth-Webb shares a passionate call for us …

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Silver Linings

Following the shock of having to temporarily close or significantly limit the numbers of children attending during the emergency pandemic response, emotional upheaval and destabilisation for staff is likely – especially in a newly opened setting that is working hard at becoming established.  Negative feelings can easily be front-of-mind, perhaps focusing upon what is being …

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The Joy of Moving Forward in Thought

This week’s ECO blog post is an intriguing reflection about the power of life outdoors as a two-year-old for adding verbal language to his toolkit for thinking and sharing experiences.  As a writer, I am very aware of how I run a whole range of word-strings back and forth in order to say what I …

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Vegetable patch to Ofsted registration in 4 months!

So, after 18 months of set backs, we sat in the office at Wigfield Farm, Lindsey and I, waiting to sign the contract for the land that would become our nursery. My hands were shaking by the time the contract arrived at ten past! As we walked back to the car our emotions changed from …

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An Outdoor Nursery for Babies… Really?

by Carol Duffy, Early Childhood Ireland I stood transfixed in the centre of a field in Farley, near Salisbury, taking in a spectacle that took my breath away. Every part of my being knew I was witnessing the pure essence of nature pedagogy and childhood play provision. The overwhelming beauty of children at play in nature …

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What will they learn when all they do is play?

I recently took a well-deserved break in the South Hams, and as I’m sure many of you reading this will understand, my eyes and ears are always open to watching children at play. On this particular afternoon at the beach, two young brothers caught my attention. One (who I am guessing was aged about 2) …

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Growing Wild Outdoor Nursery Blog, 23rd July 2019 – Never say never!

To anyone planning to set up an outdoor nursery, a few words of wisdom, ‘if at first you do not succeed …’ Growing Wild Outdoor Nursery is the realisation of the hopes, dreams, trials and tribulations of myself and fellow outdoor specialist, Lindsey Bielby. After many knock-backs, trying to set up an outdoor nursery independently, …

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